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Supporting the Enhanced PYP: FAQs


Below are consolidated Frequently Asked Questions regarding how ManageBac will support the Enhanced PYP. Click each heading to expand.

If you have a query about PYP Next that is not covered below, please contact support@managebac.com.

Unit Plans
1. Are you going to adopt the IB PYP template?

We will provide a template based on the IB template; however, you will have the freedom to customise your own planner(s), or build-your-own template at no extra charge, with a user friendly drag ‘n drop template builder.

2. How will the planner be structured?

Our PYP Next planner structure is based on the alternative planner provided by the IB. Two default templates will be available to schools: Early Years and Primary. As currently, stand-alone units can be created for specialist subjects with the transdisciplinary theme omitted.

3. What will the planner look like? What will teachers see in terms of the engagements they design? What will be printable?

The ManageBac PYP planner is still in design and we will be sharing it with you as soon as possible. You will be able to print the planner.

4. How much customization will we have within the unit planner?

You will be able to enable and disable most curriculum components and add guidance text, although there will remain a default set of fixed components for some fields, such as transdisciplinary theme. Reordering will be possible within sections.

6. To confirm, with the new inline unit editor, one person could be editing learning goals while someone else edits ATL skills, but we can't edit the same portion at the same time, correct?

Correct, you can work simultaneously within the same unit but not on the exact same section. This is to prevent over-writing of each other's work.

7. Do you need to click Save Changes in each section of the unit planner?

Yes, the reason for this is to provide the option to undo your changes if you decide to not keep your edits, by clicking Discard Changes, and to show your edits to your colleagues by clicking Save Changes.

8. Can you change the way Learning Outcomes are viewed and selected, to make it more like Concepts?

Yes! We will display all subjects using tabs, like Concepts. We will also remove the “years” dropdown and default to the unit year level. The dropdown will only show if the unit is mapped to multiple years.

9. Will the PYP planners be archived each year or editable the following year (ie containing planning, reflections etc from the previous year)?

This is still in design. We will update customers in the coming months so everyone knows the degree to which we will enable carry-over to subsequent years.

10. Will current units be added into the new planner? Or will the coordinators and teachers have to manually transfer all the information over?

We will transfer old units to the new platform once it is released. Fields that will be migrated over:

We will be migrating legacy fields, which are being deprecated, such as Transdisciplinary Skills over to the new planners as a read-only reference, allowing teachers to see previous inputs as a reference for completing the new planners.

New components will be added to broadly align with the Additional design of PYP planner released by the IB, and reflection will be more granular throughout the Unit of Inquiry.

11. How can an admin track unit changes?

We plan to provide Audit Logs based on when units are created or units are updated, which admins can subscribe to either as Daily or Weekly Digests.

12. In ePYP, the attitudes are embedded in Learner Profile, how will this work in Managabac since the old one the attitudes are still separated?

The Attitudes you have already selected within units will be visible read-only in the new planner. You will be able to see Attitudes you previously selected but will not be able to amend them. Instead, you will select Learner Profile attributes.

13. The Early years planner in ePYP, they focus on the PLAY as part of the planner and AGENCY (for all PYP), will managebac provide these sections too?

Yes, there will be flexibility to create additional Planner Templates: by default we have Standard POI, Specialist for Stand-alone Subjects and Early Years. In the MYP & DP, we offer Standard and Interdisciplinary templates.

14. What about Reflections?

Reflection and dialogue between teachers will be supported alongside the planner. Editable prompts can be used to guide reflections and these can be tagged to build connections with other components such as ATL skills.

Curriculum Management
1. What are the key changes at a curriculum level?

Some components have not changed:

  1. Transdisciplinary learning still underpins the PYP and, while there is support for specialist subjects outside of the PoI, planning with PYP Next continues to reflect the interconnectedness of different subject areas.
  2. Concept-based inquiry remains the pedagogical approach of the PYP, and PYP Next supports the exploration of lines of inquiry that are centered around a transdisciplinary theme.
  3. The IB learner profile continues to represent the broad range of human attributes developed in individual learners and valued by the IB learning community.
  4. Six Units of Inquiry are still required for most grade levels.
  5. Scope and sequences currently remain the same.

There are several changes that will broadly impact the PYP:

  1. Agency becomes the central principle of the PYP, with an increased focus on the human elements of a school and how their voice, choice and ownership impacts learning and teaching.
  2. Planning becomes more collaborative with increased flexibility, as the PYP planner can be adapted to reflect individual school contexts and needs.
  3. Reflection is no longer a key concept and is now more widely embedded into the planning of the PYP.
  4. Attitudes have been incorporated within the descriptors of the IB learner profile and are no longer a separate element of the PYP.
  5. Transdisciplinary skills have become the Approaches to Learning to reflect the terminology of the other IB programmes, and schools can develop their own sub-skills for the Approaches to Learning.
  6. Unit durations are flexible and open-ended, although they should last at least 3-4 weeks.
2. Would the school be able to upload on Managebac their own designed Learning Outcomes?

You will be able to add your own Learning Outcomes yourself, or you can send them to us as an Excel file and we can add them for you. We can also add skills or attributes you would like to track alongside your academics.

3. Do you have standards on file that we can access in our planners?

Yes, we have more than 600 common standard sets within our Atlas database, which will be available within ManageBac for you to request to be added to your account.

4. What will the curriculum mapping look like?

We are currently porting over many of the advanced unit analytic features and curriculum overviews from Atlas into ManageBac. For example, the Unit Calendar can already be seen in C1 classes on the new UI.

We will preserve the POI as a default, and the current curriculum overview, but with enhanced filters and customizable vertical and horizontal planning views.

5. Will the Approaches to Learning be customisable?

Yes ATL skills will be customisable, and so will the IB Learner Profile attributes in case you wish to add additional attributes.

Additionally, the ATL skills for the Early Years will be built into the Early Years template planner.

7. Will ATL skills be directly aligned to Learning Outcomes?

Not yet, but this is being developed in a broad way for all four IB programmes. However, Learner Profile attributes and ATL skills will now appear within the Learning Goals section. You will also be able to tag and filter tasks, assessments and reflections with ATL skills and Learner Profile attributes.

8. Can you see which Scope & Sequence are selected within the unit plan?

Yes, this functionality will remain consistent with what is currently supported on ManageBac. That being, teachers can select their Scope & Sequence to address within the unit plan directly, which will then push through to unit analytics for coordinators or group planning sessions to see what is covered across all units.

10. Will you provide Vertical & Horizontal tracking?

Flexible tagging of unit components, including tasks and assessments, will facilitate tracking and analytics, supporting vertical curriculum articulation, and improving horizontal connectivity across the curriculum.

Assessment
1. What connections will tasks have?

You will be able to link Tasks to specific ATLs, Learner Profile and Scope & Sequence, or assess via a Rubric.

2. What will the gradebook look like?

We will be implementing a split-screen gradebook view, with the ability to directly annotate student work while directly assessing rubrics or entering comments.

The gradebook will be a more visual layout, meaning teachers can directly see criteria and assess without the need to click-away.

3. Can rubrics be individualised for tasks?

Yes, you will be able to define Rubric templates within your settings, and then customize these via task-specific clarification.

4. How much customization will schools have for the gradebook? Can we expand gradebook or assessment options so we can track more formative data?

A gradebook update is planned for 2019 for all programmes which will support the tracking and analysis of a wider range of assessment data.

5. Will students be able to fill their self-assessment rubrics in the gradebook?

We are currently evaluating the best way to support this. This will be available via Google Task Templates, which is currently present on the new UI, however we are investigating options to support this directly within ManageBac itself.

6. Will there be the possibility of showing student progress over a certain time period?

We are looking to support this via the context of the Portfolio and our refined Parent view. Please stay tuned.

7. Will our current Assessment configuration be lost?

Assessment options and rubrics will carry over automatically to PYP Next.

Reporting
1. How will reporting be linked to unit plans?

This is customizable according to your schools account assessment settings and report template layout.

2. Can images be added to Report cards? If teachers are assigning tags to evidence of learning, is there any connection between that and reporting? Or is it just a case that they can view the evidence when reporting?

Yes, via the new Rich Text Editors fields, we will support the ability to include images with emojis, stickers & graphics in the Portfolio, and have these push through to report cards. The Portfolio will bring Reports to life by allowing them to become a showcase for student success. Teachers will have the option to include Starred Coursework / Portfolio items in the Report alongside their comments.

3. Will it be possible to track if parents have opened report cards?

Yes, via the new Web View report cards, its possible to display whether or not a parent has viewed the content in a report card.

Portfolio
1. What is the ManageBac student portfolio going to look like?

Our portfolio will allow you to capture, share and curate student learning experiences. Both students and teachers will be able to add goals, reflections, media and examples of student work. Teachers can post to multiple student portfolios from web & mobile if, for example, a video or photograph features several students, and make connections with ATL skills, the IB Learner Profile and the new IB Standards and Practices. Fully customisable award badges can be built into the portfolio to record milestones and achievements. Advanced options will enable parents to respond to and comment on their childs portfolio.

2. Does the Portfolio provide voice-recording functionality, such as over an image?

Yes, we are currently considering the best way to support this, either via our IA Oral recording feature, or via our annotation tool Vantage Reader. We will provide updates in forthcoming blog posts.

3. Will students be able to access the portfolio independently on an iPad?

Yes. We're currently working on updating our student portal access to make it easier for younger Primary Years students to log in, but they will absolutely be able to access their portfolio from any web browser, or via app on their phones or iPads.

4. Can we trial the portfolio functionality without it being shared with our parent community (i.e. a pilot class or mock up of a child’s portfolio)?

As part of the enhanced portfolio permissions we will allow you to restrict access to portfolios. This will enable you to fully explore the portfolio functionality without it being immediately shared with parents.

5. It is nice to see that the portfolios are being updated - if you have worked with SeeSaw, does it compare?

Yes, it will be comparable to SeeSaw but we will also have pre-built tags for curriculum components, e.g. Learner Profile, ATL etc, whereas with SeeSaw standards and skills need to be configured manually.

Exhibition & Student Agency
1. How will the exhibition planner be supported?

While we will be ready to share more information by early June, worksheets for Service Learning and Exhibition will allow students to plan, record and reflect upon action as a dynamic outcome of agency.

A Project-based Learning worksheet will support exhibition planning by students. This will also be provided as an editable template based on the new IB student exhibition planner.

2. Will you support Student Agency?

Our Service Learning worksheet will allow students to record and reflect upon action as a dynamic outcome of agency. Students will be able to record reflections, photos, videos and have dialogue with their teachers.

Integrations
1. Will additional partners be added to integrate with our PYP classes & tasks?

Yes, with alignment to the new UI, PYP schools will be able to integrate with those partners we support more broadly on ManageBac, such as TurnItIn LTI integration for plagiarism filtering, Google Docs for task-templates, and our Vantage Reader tool for annotations.

2. Will there be Office365 integration like Google Docs integration in the future?

While we don't have a specific development timeline in place yet, this is a priority for our development team to consider in the second half of the year, and we're currently in discussions with the Office365 team on how best to support this request.

3. How will the integration between Atlas and ManageBac work?

You can read further details on the Atlas-ManageBac bridge solution via the blog here.

Mobile App
1. Will ManageBac be available as an app for android phones?

Yes. We're in the midst of redesigning our app now, and intend for it to be available for both iOS and Android. It will be available within the 2019-2020 school year.

2. Will it be available for parents and teachers?

The new App will be available for all users: Students, Parents, Teachers & Admins.

General
1. How is ManageBac improving its interface for PYP?

PYP Next is fully aligned with our new user interface released in 2018 for other programmes. This provides schools with a harmonized interface across the full IB Continuum.

Our new interface is more performative (faster page loads), with fewer clicks and a fully-responsive layout (web + mobile + tablet). Furthermore, our PYP curriculum icons have been refreshed to provide visual cues with greater personalisation, for example, teachers can set a background image for their units.

2. ManageBac has many clicks, and I just learned the old layout. Can you help me?

We will be adding Global Search & Quick Add tools to assist in learning a new interface with ease, and eliminating excessive clicks. These will be released for all programmes on ManageBac roughly in May.

Global Search will allow you to search units, portfolios, tasks, users, classes, groups, year groups, projects, activities etc, without the need to click into each tab, all accessible directly from your dashboard.

Further, the Quick Add feature will allow you to swiftly add new tasks, units, enter grades and attendance, or upload to multiple student portfolios at once, all from your dashboard.

3. Will there be a simpler sign-on for students?

We are considering offering the ability for students to log-in via a QR-code or a similar method, stay tuned as we test this, while ensuring it meets our standards for data security.

5. Will the interface be available only in English?

We will provide the Parent UI in 7 different languages (English, Chinese Traditional & Simplified, French, Spanish, Arabic, & Japanese). We are also very excited to support a full Staff & Student Chinese UI releasing alongside PYP Next.

7. How can we track against IB Standards & Practices?

We are supporting PYP coordinators to make IB programme evaluation a process of continuous improvement in their schools, by linking the IB Standards and Practices within unit plans and student portfolios.

Furthermore, as the delivery partner for the new IB Concierge (replacing IB Docs) we will be providing dragndrop evidence submission from ManageBac, making the evidence gathering process smooth and efficient.

Release Details & Timeframe
1. When will the new UI be released?

PYP Next will be available for schools on ManageBac to upgrade from summer 2019. Although the final transition date is to be confirmed, PYP Next will go into effect for all schools using ManageBac from August 1, 2019 for May-session schools and January 1, 2020 for November-session schools in the southern hemisphere.

2. Is there any trial period for the admin team to try the new platform before it is introduced to the whole school?

Beginning June 2019, we will have a demo version you can use to become familiar with the new system. We are also offering a range of webinars and in-person trainings which you can find on https://events.managebac.com/

3. I have read that the new interface will go live over the summer of 2019. Is it possible to release this earlier?

It will not be possible to transition to PYP Next before the summer due to the database migrations required. We planned this for the summer in order to avoid any disruption for schools within the middle of the current academic year.

We expect to provide PYP Next to schools on the ManageBac demo sandbox in the early spring, so that PYP Coordinators can explore the new interface and design before the full transition in the summer.

4. When do we need to do the database migration? How long will it take?

No, we will manage the migration on the back-end for you!

5. Will you still be able to view and use the old user interface on ManageBac?

Please note that the transition to PYP Next is permanent and irreversible. Once you have enabled PYP Next for your school’s account, it will not be possible to edit your legacy PYP curriculum; however, you will still have read-only access to your old Programme of Inquiry and Units of Inquiry.

6. Will you be at the IBA Conference in New Orleans? Can you share more info then?

Yes, certainly! Please join our expo session or visit our conference booth to take a closer look at our support for the new PYP, and changes for ManageBac as a whole.

7. How should we transition between academic years?

For your legacy PYP classes created during the 2018-2019 academic year, we recommend bulk archiving these classes, and creating new PYP Next classes.

Webinars & Workshops
1. When will Workshops be held? I need to be able to assist our teachers!!

Workshops will begin in July and held around the globe. You can register now via our events page here.

Workshops are suitable for PYP coordinators or account administrators.

2. Will tutorials and videos be available for internal use?

Yes, we will be updating all of our help materials, from our annotated text guides, to our video tutorials and PDF quick-start guides.

All will be ready in July to get you and your teachers up-to-speed with the new UI.

3. When will Webinars be held? Can anybody attend?

Webinars will be ongoing, held roughly every 2-4 weeks, as we keep you updated with our plans.

Beginning with higher level overviews of PYP Next changes, running right through to training for PYP teachers on unit planning, assessment and general navigation of the new UI.

Our webinars provide opportunities for interaction and immediate feedback, via live polls and Q&A with our support team and guest speakers. You can register now via our events page here.

4. I cant attend the time the webinar is held at. Can I receive a recording?

Absolutely! For those unable to attend during the allocated times, recordings will be issued to all registrants following the completion of the webinar, with a summary of any FAQs.

5. Where can I find previous Webinars?

Webinar recordings can either be found on our Vimeo page or via our Help Centre on the right-hand side.

Questions & Feedback

If you would like to participate in our PYP Next focus group, please contact our Curriculum Director, Leila Holmyard, by emailing leila@managebac.com.

Alternatively, email our Support Team at support@managebac.com if you have any questions or feedback.

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